Another day in the life of a barefoot college student - 4 years later

by sharleen wl

It was 4 years ago that I wrote "A day in the life of a barefoot college student" so you may be wondering why I'm still in school. Did I continue on to graduate school? Nope. I should've graduated at the end of last spring, but I have to retake a few courses and do some extra work before I can graduate.

barefoot college student
People tell me I'm too much of a free spirit, a wild child. I really love life, and I guess I've been enjoying it a little too much, and now I'm paying the price. Needless to say my parents aren't happy and they have been giving me s h i t about it. But hey, at least I didn't quit or flunk out (yet), right?

As I wrote in my previous posts, I moved out of my parents' house at the beginning of my sophomore year. I'm living in a small apartment within walking distance from campus, and I work a part time job.

I'm still able to go barefoot most of the time including at work. I also have alot more freedom living on my own, not the least is being completely n a k e d at home all the time. Ya, I dislike clothes almost as much as I do socks and shoes, haha.

***

8:00 am - my alarm goes off and I'm like, "oh f u c k, I'm dead tired" so I turn it off. I have a math test today at 9, and I have been studying all night for it. I was planning to not sleep at all but about an hour ago I caved. So I tell myself I'll get up in like 15 minutes. I feel a bit chilly so I pull up the blanket to cover my n u d e body.

I startle when I open my eyes. I know I've overslept. But for how long? I look at the clock and its 8:57! I panick and immediately jump out of bed. I definitely will be late for the exam. I quickly put on my shorts and t-shirt. No time for anything else.

So this is gonna be yet another day without a shower which means my already filthy feet won't get washed just yet. Heck, I don't even wash my face or comb my hair.

Good thing I don't have to wear shoes. I grab my backpack and run to school. Normally it takes like 15 minutes to walk to class. Running will probably cut it in half but I'll still be late cuz its 9 o'clock now!

I cuss as I get in the building for now I have to climb 3 flights of stairs to get to my class (their's no elevator). I get there at 9:08, out of breath and sweating like a pig with my heart throbbing. I stand in front of the door for like a minute to catch my breath. When I walk in all heads turn towards me. "Sorry I'm late," I say to the professor who is actually quite a nice lady (much different than the old goat I had in the first year). She just smiles and hands me the exam.

I'm still sweating and panting as I sit down. I wipe the sweat off my face with the palms of my hands and then wipe them on my shirt. I tell myself I gotta chill and focus on the test. Not an easy thing. The test is tough despite having studied for it all night. I just hate math. Finnaly the prof tells us to stop working and turn in the test. I'm still working on one last problem, but the prof is already standing beside me and she says, "Ok Sharleen, time's up. Give me the test!"

I sigh in frustration and feel like crying as I hand it to her. I quickly walk out of the room and down the stairs to avoid talking to anyone. Fear grips my heart. Failing this test would be devastating. What am I gonna do? I feel so dejected.

sobbing my heart out
I slowly walk to the park across from the building and sit on a bench in an isolated area. I cover my face with my palms and start sobbing. I cry for a few minutes before I finnaly get ahold of myself. I need to be positive now more than ever. Being fearful and depressed will only make things worse. I need to apply all the things I've learned in personal development over the years to help myself.

My face is a total mess. Since I don't have any tissue I wipe my tears with my hands and blow snot rockets (after making sure their's no one nearby). Still, the loud honks attract the attention of a couple of guys walking in a distance for they look towards me. Oops! But luckily their too far away to say anything to me.

I wipe my snotty hands on the grass then look at my soles. They are black with darker spots from whatever shit I stepped on. Even the tops and sides of my feet are dirty. I smile, amused at how much I have changed since when I first became a barefooter at age 9.

Its now 10:13. My next class won't be until 2 pm but I have a homework due for that class which I haven't done. Actually I have enough time and should be able to finish it before class. But... because I was in such a big rush this morning, I left everything at home. So now I've got no choice but to walk back to my apartment.

I slowly stand up and light a cigarette as I start walking. I know its a bad habit but it helps calm my mind. I don't encourage you to do it, though. I've been saying I can quit whenever I want to but the thing is, I've never felt like I want to :p

I get home at 10:30, throw my backpack down and take everything off. Ahh, that feels good. Especially my shorts are a bit too tight. Wish I had a different pair to wear especially on a day like this but these are the only clean ones left (not super clean, I've worn them for a few days already). I haven't done laundry in ages.

I sit at my desk planning to get started on the homework but I'm drained and can't consentrate. I need to take a short nap. So I set my alarm for half an hour and head to bed. I can't risk oversleeping and not doing my homework since it counts towards my grade.

I wake up at 11:05, still exhausted. The nap didn't help much, and I have to force myself to get up and do my homework. I make myself a cup of coffee and start working. At around noon I feel hungry. I open the fridge to see if there's anything I can eat. There's half a tuna sandwich left over from yesterday, so I quickly eat it. Not very filling, but its better than nothing.

I finish the homework at 1:35, right in time to go to class and turn it in. Phew! So I put my clothes on and walk back to school. Its a very warm day and I can feel the heat from the pavement on my bare soles. It gets a bit uncomfortable, so I try to walk in the shade and on painted surfaces as much as possible.

My last class for the day ends at 4 pm. I wish I could go back home and sleep until tomorrow morning but I have a job to go to which starts at 5. Fortunately, the university, my work place, and apartment are all within walking distance. I stop by a food stand along the way to get some coffee. The vendor is an elderly Chinese man whom I've gotten to know quite well.

"Hey, good to see you again my barefoot friend. How are you today?" he says joyfully as he sees me.

I sigh and reply, "I'm pooped."

"Oh... have you been studying all night again?"

"Yep."

"Well, hang in there. One day you'll look back and say it was all worth it."

"I hope so..." I reply weekly.

"I know you will. You've got to believe in yourself, young lady!"

"Your right Mr. Wong, thanks for reminding me" I respond more cheerfully this time as I brush my bangs with my fingers. I sit down and chat with him a little while I drink my coffee before continuing walking to my work place. I light up a cigarette as I'm leaving.

"Ack! I told you not to smoke, its not good for you. You should listen to old Charlie!" he says wagging his finger at me.

I giggle and say, "I know, but it helps me relax in times like this." He just shakes his head as I get up and say goodbye.

I arrive at the store at 4:45. I throw the cigarette butt on the ground and squash it under my bare sole before entering. I just love doing that :)

"Hey, your a little early today but you look like a zombie, haha!" says Michelle my young boss whom I get along with really well. We're actually more like friends.

"Ya, it was a long night and a rough day."

"Oh no, you poor thing. Well, hopefully it won't be too busy this evening so you can rest a little," she says.

Michelle buys us Chinese food for dinner from the resterant down the street. It tastes really good, maybe because I'm pretty hungry not having eaten much today. After eating I feel very, very sleepy. Its been pretty slow, not alot of customers. So I rest my head on the counter and close my eyes for a while.

Not sure how long I've been dozing off when I feel someone tapping on my head and hear a stern voice with a heavy accent. "Hey, wake up! You think this is a hotel or what? I don't pay you to go to sleep in here. If you wanna sleep just stay home and don't work here no more!"

Its my big boss, Michelle's mom. She's glaring at me. "I... I'm sorry Mrs. Tanaka. I was studying all night last night, and am exhausted today. But it won't happen again... I promise," I reply sheepishly.

"You students are all the same! You all like to have fun and always wait till the last minute to study. Kids nowadays don't get their priorities straight!" she chides.

I glance at Michelle, and she's snickering. I try hard not to laugh. The grumpy old woman now turns to her daughter and scolds her. "You better watch her and not let her sleep or I'll cut you're allowance!"

"Ok mom," she replies struggling to keep her face straight.

I'm fully awake now. I look at the clock, its 8:30 pm. Another half an hour before closing time. Thank goodness.

My apartment is like 10 minutes from the store and the walk home is quite relaxing. I smoke another one while I walk. The night is cool and the streets are quiet. I can hear crikets chirping around me. The sidewalk is still rather warm but is soothing to my bare soles. The only down side is, I love reading ghost stories, and often get spooked walking home alone at night.

9:15 pm - I'm so happy to be back in my cozy apartment. What a long day it has been. I take everything off once again and sit on the couch. I don't have any test or anything due tomorrow, so I can relax tonight. What a relief. My mind goes back to this morning's test, but I quickly tell myself not to worry, just enjoy the present moment. I'll deal with whatever may happen if/when it happens.

So what should I do now? I could take a shower. Nah, I'm too tired and I don't think I smell that bad yet. :p I grab a personal development book and read a little. I really identify with the author because she occasionally uses swear words :) The book is fun to read, I highly recommend it - You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life.

I like to meditate before going to bed. So after I'm done reading I play my favorite relaxing music softly, sit cross-legged on the floor and meditate for 10 minutes. After that I brush my teeth and climb into bed. My feet remain unwashed, but it no longer bothers me to sleep in dirty feet.

The sheets and pillows are so soft and cool. I grab Emo my teddy bear and hug him. Its amazing he's still with me after over a decade (my dad gave him to me when I was 7). Everything feels so sensuous, and I'm so relaxed that I feel the urge to play. No, not with Emo. I think most of you know what I'm talking about. If not, just wait a few years, haha.

So ya, I played and it was aaahhh... so magical. I got pretty loud, and I'm wondering if my neighbors could hear me since the walls are pretty thin. But its a form of stress relief which I badly needed, so who gives a fuck! (:

10:45 pm - now I'm really ready for a long restful sleep. Nighty nite (:

From paradise Hawaii this is Sharleen reminding you that life is magical. Yes, I still believe that despite the occasional rough ride. So...

Aloha, and have a magical day!

Enjoy going barefoot? Check out this book!

References:

A day in the life of a barefoot college student

Working a barefoot job

Update:
I'm now working full time and still barefoot

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